cup

noun
\ˈkəp \

Definition of cup 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an open usually bowl-shaped drinking vessel

2a : a drinking vessel and its contents

b : the consecrated wine of the Communion

3 : something that falls to one's lot

4 : an ornamental cup offered as a prize (as in a championship)

5 : something resembling a cup: such as

a : a cup-shaped plant organ

b : an athletic supporter reinforced usually with plastic to provide extra protection to the wearer

c : either of two parts of a brassiere that are shaped like and fit over the breasts

d : the metal case inside a hole in golf also : the hole itself

6 : a usually iced beverage resembling punch but served from a pitcher rather than a bowl

7 : a half pint : eight fluid ounces

8 : a food served in a cup-shaped usually footed vessel a fruit cup

9 : the symbol ∪ indicating the union of two sets — compare cap sense 7

in one's cups

: drunk

cup

verb
cupped; cupping

Definition of cup (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to treat by cupping

2a : to curve into the shape of a cup cupped his hands around his mouth

b : to place in or as if in a cup

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Other Words from cup

Noun

cuplike \ ˈkəp-​ˌlīk \ adjective

Synonyms for cup

Synonyms: Noun

mug

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Examples of cup in a Sentence

Noun

Would you like another cup of tea? The winner will take home the cup.

Verb

He cupped his hands around his mouth and shouted at us. I had to cup my hand to my ear in order to hear him. He cupped his mouth with his hands and shouted at us. I sat with my chin cupped in my hand.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Drinking a cup of coffee was safe and predictable again. Elise Riley, azcentral, "Raise your hand," 2 July 2018 Longtime Starbucks boss Howard Schultz brews a cup of coffee at the company’s Costa Rican coffee farm George Steinmetz for TIME Rodriguez and his research are the vanguard of Starbucks’ efforts to adapt. Justin Worland/alajuela, Time, "Your Morning Cup of Coffee Is in Danger. Can the Industry Adapt in Time?," 21 June 2018 There’s nothing like a fresh cup of karma in the morning. Breanna Edwards, The Root, "Alabama Musician Whines About Being ‘Completely Screwed’ After Threatening to Shoot Immigrant Families on Social Media," 21 June 2018 Translation: That dream app may be months, or years away, but the prospect of turning a daily cup of coffee into a lightning-quick brain boost—minus the side effects—is almost as invigorating as the drink itself. Elizabeth Varnell, Vogue, "Now There’s an Algorithm for How Much Coffee Can Boost Your Performance—And When to Drink It," 7 June 2018 Keep It in a Cone At the ice-cream shop, always choose a cone over a cup with a plastic spoon. Allyson Shaw, National Geographic, "Reducing Plastic as a Family Is Easy. Here's How.," 4 June 2018 The menu includes three-cup chicken (made just with wings) and black pepper beef. Florence Fabricant, New York Times, "Stir, in Philadelphia Museum of Art, Prepares for October Opening," 10 July 2018 These micro-canines have gone beyond the teacup poodle to the single-shot-espresso-cup poodle. John Kelly, Washington Post, "If your air bag inflates, you don’t want your feet on the dashboard," 9 July 2018 Melt 2 cups of the butter in a pot over medium heat. Paula Forbes, GQ, "How to Cook Burgers from Scratch Without a Meat Grinder," 1 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Whisk in ⅓ cup brown sugar, ¼ cup red miso, and 1 Tbsp. Alex Delany, Bon Appetit, "Chicken Wing Dinner: A Rent Week Winner," 4 May 2018 Acupuncture, herbal and dietary supplementation, medical massage, cupping, and a variety of other techniques all fall under the broader umbrella of TCM. Abigail Barronian, Outside Online, "Traditional Chinese Medicine Holds the Secret to Heath," 1 June 2018 The former Patriots receiver Deion Branch cupped his hand to his ear, pro wrestling style, during his turn. Marc Tracy, New York Times, "N.F.L. Draft 2018 Round 2 and 3 Live Updates," 28 Apr. 2018 One photo, taken on June 30, 1998, shows Kenny G playing the saxophone for two girls decked out in scrunchies and tie-dye; in the background, a man cups the cheeks of a woman grinning from ear to ear. Elena Weissmann, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Summerfest 1998 featured scrunchies, tie-dye and Widespread Panic," 28 June 2018 To double check, hold the shoe upright, cup your palm around the heel and try to fold the toe back toward the heel. Elizabeth Narins, Cosmopolitan, "11 Things You Need to Know Before You Buy Running Shoes," 8 July 2014 But when a veterinarian cupped Henrietta’s face in her hands, the puppy weakly thumped her tail. Mary Carole Mccauley, baltimoresun.com, "Emaciated puppy found under pile of trash is fighting for her life," 13 July 2018 So when Guerra finally blew his whistle, defender Matt Besler squatted near the midfield stripe, balancing himself with his right hand while cupping his face with the left to hide the tears. Kevin Baxter, latimes.com, "As World Cup looms, U.S. players still lament loss in Trinidad," 7 May 2018 The crescendo came when Rory sank an uphill 50-foot-long birdie putt on the eighth hole and let out a thunderous roar, cupping his ear and yelling at the partisan American crowd. Jesse Smithey, Detroit Free Press, "Ryder Cup rematch? Rory McIlroy vs. Patrick Reed in Masters Sunday final pair," 7 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cup.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cup

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cup

Noun

Middle English cuppe, from Old English, from Late Latin cuppa cup, alteration of Latin cupa tub — more at hive

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Statistics for cup

Last Updated

7 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cup

The first known use of cup was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for cup

cup

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cup

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a small round container that often has a handle and that is used for drinking liquids (such as tea and coffee)

: the liquid that is contained in a cup

: a unit of measurement that is used when you are cooking

cup

verb

English Language Learners Definition of cup (Entry 2 of 2)

: to curve (your hand) into the shape of a cup

: to put your hand in a curved shape around (something)

cup

noun
\ˈkəp \

Kids Definition of cup

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a container to drink out of in the shape of a small bowl usually with a handle

2 : the contents of a small drinking container : cupful I drank a cup of tea.

3 : a unit of measure that equals half a pint or eight fluid ounces

4 : a trophy in the shape of a cup with two handles

5 : something like a small bowl in shape or use I picked her up in the cup of my hands …— Jean Craighead George, My Side of the Mountain

cup

verb
cupped; cupping

Kids Definition of cup (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to curve the hand or hands into the shape of a small bowl

2 : to put the hands in a curved shape around She cupped my face.

cup

noun
\ˈkəp \

Medical Definition of cup 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a usually open bowl-shaped drinking vessel often having a handle and a stem and base and sometimes a lid

2 : a drinking vessel and its contents : the beverage or food contained in a cup a second cup of coffee

3 : something resembling a cup invagination of the blastula to form a multilayered cellular cup : as

a(1) : an athletic supporter reinforced for providing extra protection to the wearer in certain strenuous sports (as boxing, hockey, or football)

(2) : either of the two parts of a brassiere that are shaped like and fit over the breasts

b : a small bell-shaped glass formerly used in cupping

c : a cap of metal or plastic shaped like the femoral head and used in plastic reconstruction of the hip joint

cup

verb
cupped; cupping

Medical Definition of cup (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to treat by cupping

intransitive verb

: to undergo or perform cupping

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Comments on cup

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